Jump to content


Photo

UK Zen feedback


  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 david ellison

david ellison

    Regular Poster

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 411 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:South Devon, UK

Posted 17 February 2010 - 10:35 AM

Last September The Decorators were invited to fly at a festival in Berlin. It was a great festival and weekend apart from one minor detail - there was no wind! We can all exaggerate when it comes to the wind - describing it as too much or not enough and using it as the excuse for a less than stellar fly. Well I know I can! But Berlin was different, there really was no wind. Only those with Thomas Horvath's superb "synergistic" single line gliding kites were in their element. I left feeling that we hadn't really been able to contribute as much as we could have.

The Decs low wind kite has always been the Rev One. Felix's preferred set up is a 4 wrap centre spar and 3 wrap in the rest of the frame. It's a good combination and gives the sail sufficient weight to keep moving in light airs above a minimum of c.2mph. Below that though, I find it drops from the sky all too readily and tends to leave Felix as the only flier still flying.

Anyway the point of all this is that I've just come back from my first 20 minutes with my brand spanking new Zen - in the very manly pink and purple fade layout. The weather was pretty average for February in the UK - cold and damp! The wind was...well, according to the smoke rising vertically from the chimneys as I walked up from my house to the village cricket (correction: village kite) field...there was no wind. Even the tall tree I usually use as my "is there enough to fly" guide wasn't having any of it. I even set the (100 ft) lines out 180 degrees in the wrong direction before realising that what wind there was was coming from the east not the west.

So how did the kite go? It went...and very well indeed. When I got sorted and pointing the right way it was gusting a mighty 1 mph'ish. The Zen seemed happy to play and I started out with some horizontal passes and centre window squares to get a feel for the feedback from the kite. I liked the way that the sail seemed to want to be worked. A 90 degree square corner felt best achieved in almost a dual line way - snap the inputs to stall and turn and then pull back to drive away. I guess this probably reflects the JB/iQuad flying style. It is very light compared to the Rev One setup that I'm more used to and will take some time to feel comfortable with. But the simple fact that it was flying positively in such a low "breeze" was a very positive sign.

At one point a mighty gust (!) of 3mph or so came through and the kite really started to pick up. Snap turns were easy, and noisy as the new icarex reacted to the frame bending and releasing with the inputs. The leading edge curves quickly as the wind rises and made me wonder how low the practical maximum wind speed will be for this kite. It will be interesting to fly it more and get a feel for how the flight characteristics change as the wind increases. Quick turns also started to get away from me as the tendency to want to oversteer kicked in. No doubt time in the air will help to find the right balance and inputs. I suppose I was approaching it from the perspective of how a Rev One reacts and the Zen is very different. Reversing had a very different feel to it as well and will need time to feel right.

So after only a short fly my conclusions are I'm happy that I went ahead and bought the Zen without having seen or flown one. I'll also be suggesting that the team thinks about taking them to Berlin if we go again.

Congratulations to the design team and to Bazzer's quality kite making skills. :clap;

#2 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 17 February 2010 - 11:40 AM

<snip>


David,

You have an important e-mail to attend to. Please respond asap. Thanks for your Zen reflection. Blackheath Sunday on Metcheck is suggesting 0mph in the middle of the day. Sounds ideal. See you there <grins>

Felix

#3 big bri

big bri

    BRIAN...

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,656 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:UK,UP NORTH

Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:31 AM

Thanks David for the insite,

If it wasnt our AGM on Sunday.I would make the trip over and have a nosey down to Blackheath.
Im bursting to try one of these dam kites.

Thanks again

BRIAN...

#4 Aerochic

Aerochic

    Revadelic

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,723 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Pennsylvania

Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:24 AM

"So how did the kite go? It went...and very well indeed. When I got sorted and pointing the right way"


OMG, I didn't even think of that as a possible issue!

Better Living Through Rev Flying...

Rev Themed Ts & Goodies: http://www.zazzle.co...ckarts/clothing
Aerostakes: http://www.etsy.com/shop/LeshockArts
Rev Galleries: http://www.revkites....=user&user=1408
Flickr Pics: http://www.flickr.co...s/16896184@N05/


#5 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:03 PM

"So how did the kite go? It went...and very well indeed. When I got sorted and pointing the right way"
OMG, I didn't even think of that as a possible issue!


Taking off against the c1mph air movement is just that much more difficult but not actually impossible. Just requires more speed to achieve an 'effective' wind speed...

Felix

#6 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:04 PM

Thanks David for the insite,

If it wasnt our AGM on Sunday.I would make the trip over and have a nosey down to Blackheath.
Im bursting to try one of these dam kites.

Thanks again

BRIAN...


Given the latest forecast wind speed it would not be worth travelling.

Felix

#7 david ellison

david ellison

    Regular Poster

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 411 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:South Devon, UK

Posted 18 February 2010 - 02:03 PM

I've been reflecting on the maiden flight yesterday - particularly how quickly the leading edge took on a banana curve in even small increases in wind. i've always meddled with my Revs and I think I'll probably play with different variations in order to control the amount of bend. Now where's my bag of Rev One spars......? Has anyone else been trying out different combo's?

#8 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 18 February 2010 - 02:12 PM

I've been reflecting on the maiden flight yesterday - particularly how quickly the leading edge took on a banana curve in even small increases in wind. i've always meddled with my Revs and I think I'll probably play with different variations in order to control the amount of bend. Now where's my bag of Rev One spars......? Has anyone else been trying out different combo's?


With the fighter kites the bowing of the lateral (cross) spar gives deeper billow and helps in directional stability given the deeper keel.

Overpowering a Rev1 or a Rev1.5 seems to result in a lack of directional stability. I wonder if this is because the vertical spars are not parallel if the leading edge takes on a 'curved configuration'.

Felix

#9 andelscott

andelscott

    Regular Poster

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 447 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:United Kingdom

Posted 18 February 2010 - 03:40 PM

Overpowering a Rev1 or a Rev1.5 seems to result in a lack of directional stability. I wonder if this is because the vertical spars are not parallel if the leading edge takes on a 'curved configuration'.


Would this not argue in favour of the 'fat boy' SLE? Yet (from memory) I don't remember my 1.5 SLE performing any better when over-powered - or maybe my priority was to dump power at the edge of the window rather than fly accurately at the time...
Andy

#10 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 19 February 2010 - 12:30 AM

Would this not argue in favour of the 'fat boy' SLE? Yet (from memory) I don't remember my 1.5 SLE performing any better when over-powered - or maybe my priority was to dump power at the edge of the window rather than fly accurately at the time...


The stiff Leading Edge would prevent the billow forming! I'm thinking that the stiffer centre spar that we have used for the REV1 3,4,3 wrap may help. Wondering if Rev1 Race,3,Race might work?

Felix

#11 david ellison

david ellison

    Regular Poster

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 411 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:South Devon, UK

Posted 19 February 2010 - 01:37 AM

It will be fun to play with swapping out spars, but before we go too far talking about changing round the frame to different combinations, let me just clarify that this is just finessing the "feel" to suit personal likes and habits built up over the years. The brief first fly already convinced me that the standard Zen frame is superb in the lightest of airs and opens up the extreme low end of the wind range.

#12 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 19 February 2010 - 02:46 AM

It will be fun to play with swapping out spars, but before we go too far talking about changing round the frame to different combinations, let me just clarify that this is just finessing the "feel" to suit personal likes and habits built up over the years. The brief first fly already convinced me that the standard Zen frame is superb in the lightest of airs and opens up the extreme low end of the wind range.


I'm certainly looking forward to flying the factory version. <grins> Doesn't look like it will happen this weekend now...

Felix

#13 Kitelife

Kitelife

    Forum Guru

  • Forum Host
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,936 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Portland, OR USA

Posted 19 February 2010 - 09:31 AM

As David expressed above, the Zen spars are superb for the bottom wind range, makes "flat footed" flying in 0-2 FAR easier for the average skilled flier as the Zen rods allow the kite to flex and cup wind real nicely... Definitely the right first frame to get with the kite, gives as much lift as possible in the very lightest of winds.

As a "performance upgrade", I've been using Race rods in my outer leading edge and verticals with 2-wrap center (all Rev I spars)... For my more animated, snappy and dynamic style, this combination has worked really well for me... Same spars I used in the "Zen Play" video.

John Barresi

johnbarresi.com | kitelife.com | learnkites.com | teamiquad.comkitemap.org
youtube.com/kitelife | facebook.com/kitelifemagazine | KiteLife on Google+

 

"We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails."
(found in a fortune cookie - possibly an Einstein quote)

My full list of kite articles - kitelife.com/author/john-barresi
 

Please reward posts that are helpful, give positive reputation by clicking on "Like This" button on the right side of each post.


#14 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 19 February 2010 - 10:22 AM

As David expressed above, the Zen spars are superb for the bottom wind range, makes "flat footed" flying in 0-2 FAR easier for the average skilled flier as the Zen rods allow the kite to flex and cup wind real nicely... Definitely the right first frame to get with the kite, gives as much lift as possible in the very lightest of winds.

As a "performance upgrade", I've been using Race rods in my outer leading edge and verticals with 2-wrap center (all Rev I spars)... For my more animated, snappy and dynamic style, this combination has worked really well for me... Same spars I used in the "Zen Play" video.


Interesting that you may be referring to a more flexible centre spar here.

I think that I can understand the possible advantage <grins>

Felix

#15 beach

beach

    Rev Guru

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,858 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:El Cajon Ca.

Posted 19 February 2010 - 11:57 AM

My view as in all things with this kite and the flying is that everyone will have there own style that fits them and what works for you may not be best for me. With
that being said the "Zen" rods were just a starting point and where people take it from there is up to the flyer. Me and John have been round and round on the
placement of the brake line and only in the last year have I flown with much more brake than I used too, not as much as Steve and John but pretty tight.....Posted Image
As for rods for the "Zen" I think people will just have to figure out what works best for them, me I love the original "Zen" rods but I do experiment with other
set ups all the time depending on what I want the kite to do, right or wrong no there is no such creature as far as I'm concerned...... Just my two cents but
hey I always have to put my spin on things.......Posted Image Also before it's asked me and Steve had "Zen" rods in the footage shot for the "Zen" demo's and
the B-Pro also had "Zen" rods in it...... My final word is John we will never agree on the small things but in the big ones, awww heck we'll never agree there
either Posted Image, but with that said your one of the best Posted Image pilots I've ever had the honor of flying next too and one of my best friends.......Posted ImagePosted Image (by the
way I still teach better than you)Posted Image BenPosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

#16 Felix Mottram

Felix Mottram

    Forum Veteran

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,860 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London UK

Posted 19 February 2010 - 12:21 PM

My view as in all things with this kite and the flying is that everyone will have there own style that fits them and what works for you may not be best for me. With
that being said the "Zen" rods were just a starting point and where people take it from there is up to the flyer. <snip>


Hi Ben,

Thanks for the insight. My take is that I am really interested in the relationship between the bamboo sparred single line fighter kites (which is where I started 20+ years ago) and the development of the four line kite. The crossover of practical aerodynamics and the relative properties of bamboo and the carbon rods is quite exciting.

Felix

#17 Kitelife

Kitelife

    Forum Guru

  • Forum Host
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,936 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Portland, OR USA

Posted 20 February 2010 - 01:37 AM

Right as rain, all comes down to personal taste... Neat thing about having so many options with Revs. :D

John Barresi

johnbarresi.com | kitelife.com | learnkites.com | teamiquad.comkitemap.org
youtube.com/kitelife | facebook.com/kitelifemagazine | KiteLife on Google+

 

"We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails."
(found in a fortune cookie - possibly an Einstein quote)

My full list of kite articles - kitelife.com/author/john-barresi
 

Please reward posts that are helpful, give positive reputation by clicking on "Like This" button on the right side of each post.


#18 BAZ

BAZ

    Regular Poster

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 260 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Nottingham UK

Posted 20 February 2010 - 06:34 AM

As a fairly new rev flier I find I struggle flying in low wind - eveyone who was up north will confirm this (i was on short lines and struggling when others were on 120s and up in the air)
so I bought a zen as David said without trying before buying
it arrived the morning of the rev weekend up north so didint get an airing,I was on the flying field when it arrived in Nottingham
as it turned out the sunday at the get together would have been a great opportunity to try it out but it wasnt to be
Anyway today the wind was very light and changeable direction wise,so out i went
when i set up it was showing anything from nothing to 3 1/2 mph on my windometer (it was only a cheap one so read what you will about the speed)
I found i was able to fly - nothing fancy at first as the wind was very light,I was "shall we say" keeping it in the air
I was on 90lb 80ft lines and "flying" i would say,in wind or very little wind to me that i dont think even on short lines i would be able to fly in with a 1.5
The wind then picked up a little,I could feel it on my ears,checked it with the winometer and showing 2 1/2 to 5mph - at this speed I found I could dive stop and do inverted slides
more or less I would say the kite was powered up enough for a terrible low wind flier like myself
Am I happy,YES
Am I glad I bought one,YES
Is it the answer to my dreams of flying in zero to 2mph - time will tell as my experience grows
Heres a thought,I would like to see a more experienced pilot fly my kite - If I was "grounded"with short lines and the more experienced pilots were in the air on 120s with a 1.5
what can the more experienced pilots (Like David Ellison etc) do in the extreme low wind range
I feel I was flying in wind that I would not normally have flown in so that is a big plus for me
Do i need more practice,YES indeed
I hope some of this is of use,it would have been nice to have a constant low wind reading on the windometer,but when in England do we get that !!
Heres a pic of my Zen
and by the way Bazzer the kite is very well made as usual
Zen.jpg

Edited by BAZ, 20 February 2010 - 09:19 AM.

Maker of the ULTRA NO SNAG HANDLES

BAZ

ani_victory.gif


#19 Kitelife

Kitelife

    Forum Guru

  • Forum Host
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,936 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Portland, OR USA

Posted 20 February 2010 - 11:29 AM

Great colors BAZ. :)

John Barresi

johnbarresi.com | kitelife.com | learnkites.com | teamiquad.comkitemap.org
youtube.com/kitelife | facebook.com/kitelifemagazine | KiteLife on Google+

 

"We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails."
(found in a fortune cookie - possibly an Einstein quote)

My full list of kite articles - kitelife.com/author/john-barresi
 

Please reward posts that are helpful, give positive reputation by clicking on "Like This" button on the right side of each post.


#20 big bri

big bri

    BRIAN...

  • Forum Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,656 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:UK,UP NORTH

Posted 21 February 2010 - 03:00 AM

Great colors BAZ. Posted Image


We flew yetserday with sedgwicks[rev 1s] for most of the morning.The wind was a beech wind,but blew ZIP,ZERO,through to 3mph at best.
Three pilots.All with same kite,BUT
I was perhaps the most experienced and had Race Frame.The other lads had Ul rods.One hates the sedgwick.The other Loves it.I ADORE mine

The point
Kev who hated the sedgwick[noted Hated].After two hours of sold HARD WORK,flying,gaining ground,keeping tension and basically learning how to fly in low wind with the kite.Left with a proper BDG,
Myself and Kev swopped kites.He said he couldnt maintain a hover or fall with the conrol and at the pace i was setting with my KITE[which was painfully slow he was to fast]].I didnt for a moment think it was the kite,but the pilots experience at work.We swopped and Kev handled the moves and control much,much better.BUT,i still set the pace exactly the same,with the same control,but with his kite that couldnt doit earlier.I hadnt changed a thing.

Take what you will from that.I hope its the word EXPERIENCE.Kevs a top pilot btw.

For me its simple.The ZEN has tobe some kite to BETTER the Sedgwick.For me ,low wind flying is what usually sorts the wheat from the chaff or the experienced good pilots from the real gifted,dedicated pilots.After flying the sedgwick yesterday and having a ball with it.I have to ask.What does the ZEN then give me.That the sedgwick doesnt .
Well,i beleive from what ive read.Thers isnt a bucket full of diffrence that all will notice.Infact.I beleive most wont get it because they just dont yet get or have the experience [yet]required and thats wher the ZEN sits for me.It kicks on from the Sedgwick in experienced hands and helps less experienced pilots find a real ZEN MOMENT.I cant now wait ti fly one,because low wind flying is way kewl when you get it.The ZEN for me will just give that little extra in its design and development.that will make the diffrence.
Just my 2penth

BRIAN...




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users